Ellis Hazlip pioneered one of the most important shows for African Americans in television history. Soul! ran on PBS from 1967 to 1973, and brought great musicians, writers, and activists—some of whom made their television debut on Soul!—into our homes and our lives. To keep his rich legacy alive for future generations, Melissa Haizlip, his niece, is producing and co-directing a documentary about the show and her uncle—Mr. Soul! Ellis Haizlip and the Birth of Black Power TV. A screening of this work-in-progress will be held September 24 (today) at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, as part of the Congressional Black Caucus Independent Film Series.
Haizlip died of lung cancer on January 25, 1991. His seminal contributions to “black” media at the height of the Black Power Movement changed the face of American television.
To learn more about Haizlip and the forthcoming documentary, see this story by Ericka Blount Danois in The Root: Soul! A Pioneering PBS Series.
Click here for WNET’s selection of Soul! Episodes from 1971, 72.